When Sores Won't Heal

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How about we sic Charles Foti, Louisiana’s self-righteous attorney general, on the president of the United States, the governor of Louisiana, the mayor of New Orleans, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the crew at FEMA? Not to mention himself.

Chuck’s charging two owners of a New Orleans nursing home with negligent homicide because, to quote Reuters, the state “presumes” 34 residents of the facility drowned during the flood. No need for autopsies: elderly patients seldom die of natural causes, especially under stress. Indeed, that’s why Salvador Mangano, Sr., 65, and his wife, Mable, 62, decided against evacuating these folks. They thought their patients stood the best chance of surviving Katrina and the government’s “help” in their own beds. Given the number of seniors who died in their wheelchairs at the Superdome, anyone of minimal sense and compassion would agree.

That excludes Chuck. He’s found a couple of scapegoats in the Manganos, and he’s making the most of that. Not only has this snagged him lots of publicity, it’s also deflecting attention from his murderous Masters. Talk about negligent homicide! Even if we exempt the 34 souls the Manganos supposedly killed, the state’s delinquency to date has contributed to 389 deaths in Louisiana alone. After all, government’s mangled maintenance allowed the levees to crack; its false promises of salvation during an emergency persuaded many people to make fatally bad choices; its incompetence at rescue work and its deliberate thwarting of private efforts killed more.

But the sky will rain beignets and po’ boys before Chuck turns his unrelenting justice on Leviathan. He’s worked for the beast most of his life. According to his website, he first “served” as “an attorney for several local, state and federal agencies.” Then he “serv[ed]” “for 30 years as one of the most innovative law enforcement officials in the United States, Orleans Parish Criminal Sheriff…. In his tenure as…Sheriff, he oversaw the enormous expansion of the parish jail, growing from 800 prisoners in 1973 to more than 7,000 currently.” Behold the measure of success for Our Rulers. Those who incarcerate almost 10 times as many people as their predecessors, who rip almost 10 times as many victims from their families and shatter almost 10 times as many futures and dreams, strut among us as attorneys general.

One of Chuck’s special interests is “the most vulnerable citizens of our state–the elderly and the disabled.” He fancies that he “has for many years been an advocate for the elderly.” Unless, of course, they happen to own nursing homes when Louisiana’s authorities need a red herring to distract attention from their own criminality. And Chuck is doing his best to reel that herring in. But a lifetime as Leviathan’s lackey has taken its toll, until it’s hard to tell whether he’s condemning the Manganos or his fellow bureaucrats.

“We feel we have criminal negligence,” Chuck huffed. “They did not follow the standards of care that a reasonable person would follow in a similar circumstance.” Hmmm. We talking the Manganos or FEMA?

“They were warned repeatedly both by the media and by the St. Bernard Parish emergency preparation people that the storm was coming. In effect … their inaction resulted in the death of these people.” Here Chuck surely refers to FEMA. The Manganos not only cared for their patients as the storm descended, they invited friends and family to shelter with them because they considered the nursing home so safe. And unlike Our Masters at the Superdome, the Manganos neither starved their charges nor held them at gunpoint lest they flee their abuse.

Chuck’s website urges us to rat on those we suspect of elder abuse and helpfully lists the signs of it:

  • Unusual agitation or depression
  • Excessive bruising about the face and head
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Signs of dehydration
  • Broken bones
  • Bed sores that don’t seem to heal
  • Excessive hospital visits

I daresay the Manganos will be showing some or all of these symptoms by the time the state finishes with them. Now, do you want to report Chuck to the AG’s office, or shall I?

Becky Akers [send her mail] writes primarily about the American Revolution.

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